You are here

“Cairnwood,” John Pitcairn House

-A A +A
1895, Carrère and Hastings. 1005 Cathedral Rd.

John Pitcairn, owner of “Cairnwood,” began his career with the Pennsylvania Railroad in western Pennsylvania, then shifted to manufacturing glass with the formation of Pittsburgh Plate Glass. His choice of architects, New York City's Carrère and Hastings, was adventurous—they had just finished the great hotels in St. Augustine, Florida, but had not yet received such monumental commissions as the New York Public Library, and thus were not well known in Philadelphia. Here they combined the light palette of yellow brick and limestone of the late nineteenth century and the light touch and historic French detail of Richard Morris Hunt in the Philadelphia countryside. The plan is an odd combination of Hunt's grand mansions and Shingle Style informality with the main block eroded to bring light and ventilation into each room and opening on to exterior terraces set against an angled service wing.

Writing Credits

George E. Thomas


What's Nearby


George E. Thomas, "“Cairnwood,” John Pitcairn House", [Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 2

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, George E. Thomas, with Patricia Likos Ricci, Richard J. Webster, Lawrence M. Newman, Robert Janosov, and Bruce Thomas. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2012, 211-211.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.